Friday mystery object #311 part 2


Last week I gave you this delightful jar of ‘cave snot’ to have a go at identifying:

mystery311a

Perhaps unsurprisingly, nobody came close to identifying what this is. I didn’t have a clue until I dived in and dissected out a small sample:

mystery311b

Notice the little critter on the left of the image? This immediately made it much more obvious what this stuff was – not something living in its own right but something produced by an animal.

Removing the goop reveals what we’re really dealing with:

mystery311c

mystery311e

mystery311d

I think I’ve given you all the images needed to work out what this is, so rather than just tell you, I’m making this part 2 of the mystery object, with quite a lot more to go on than the first post. So, as usual, you can put your questions, thoughts and suggestions in the comments section below. Have fun!

5 thoughts on “Friday mystery object #311 part 2

  1. I want to say malacostracan. For no good reason except I think you (or was it someone else on facebook?*) recently shared a piece on taxonomic bias and how birds got the most citations and the poor malacostracans the fewest (if the “expected” number should correspond to how speciose they are – birds are hugely over-reported on and insects and others are hugely under-reported on, which can have an impact on conservation efforts as much as anything).

    In any case, I shall start by noting it is an obvious arthropod, but I have still to figure out if it is the nymph version of a metamorphic animal or an adults/reproductive stage.

    More later, before I come the raw prawn…

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